Perry For President - Statement by Gov. Perry on Sanctuary Cities

AUSTIN – Today Governor Rick Perry released the following statement on sanctuary cities:

“Ronald Reagan once called immigrants ‘Americans by choice.’ In Texas, we have a long history of welcoming immigrants from all over the world, immigrants who have helped make our economy the strongest in the country.  It’s not fair that some people try to jump the immigration line by coming across our border illegally. One of the core responsibilities of the federal government is to secure the border. As the recent tragedy in San Francisco has shown us, it’s important for the federal government and local governments to be able to cooperate to apprehend illegal immigrants with criminal histories. San Francisco—and many other cities in America run by left-wing governments—have become ‘sanctuary cities’ that choose to openly defy U.S. immigration law and prevent cooperation with federal authorities. Perversely, the federal government subsidizes this behavior by sending Justice Department funds to cities that intentionally harbor illegal immigrants in their jails. This has to end.”

“Today, I am proposing to pull funding for the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program—or SCAAP—from sanctuary cities. States with sanctuary cities will lose a proportionate amount of their SCAAP funding as well. SCAAP funding will also be restricted to jurisdictions that actively participate in immigration law enforcement programs. Cities and counties with sanctuary policies in place will also be prohibited from applying for federal law enforcement or Department of Homeland Security grants. Federal taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to subsidize the irresponsible behavior of these governments. Furthermore, the Justice Department should allow federal immigration officials, either through the executive branch or Congressional action, to have access to prisons and holding facilities in sanctuary cities and counties, so as to verify the immigration status of people in those facilities.”

The Governor Perry Plan To End Sanctuary Cities:

  • Pull federal State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP) funding to cities and counties with sanctuary policies in place.
  • Pull federal SCAAP funding to states with sanctuary cities and counties at a proportional level to the population of said cities and counties.
  • Limit SCAAP funds to jurisdictions that actively participate in immigration law enforcement programs.
  • Prohibit cities and counties with sanctuary policies in place from applying for federal law enforcement or Department of Homeland Security grants.
  • Allow Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, either through legislative or executive action, access to prisons and holding facilities in non-compliant sanctuary cities and counties to check the immigration status of all individuals arrested.